5 Actionable Tips To Help You Take Better Pictures with your Phone


Taking pictures with a phone camera could be a struggle especially if you think the pictures aren't going to turn out good, yes?

You see, the key word there is think. Mobile phone cameras have improved drastically in their technology and now it's up to us tap that potential. Just like photos taken with your DSLR camera, phone photography needs some tweaking to make it work.

I use both my camera and phone camera for my blog photos and Instagram (Follow me? :D ) but for this post, all pictures were taken with my Infinix Note 2 phone.

We'll go straight to it.

1. Moderate Lighting

My major problem with phone photography is that most of the pictures taken are either overexposed or too dark. The best lighting is moderate lighting.

Harsh lighting like direct sunlight could make the picture look washed out. I'd recommend using a shade in this case or fixing with edits (I covered this here).

This picture was taken under a shade. So it has all the brightness minus the washed-out look. I'd also advise taking pictures outdoors rather than indoors.

2. Get in close.

This is literally my favourite part of phone photography- you can capture amazing details with your phone when you get up close. And the blurred background look (shallow depth of field) that people love about cameras? You could get that with your phone when you get in close.

This was my "touch" of red on Valentine's Day. 
I especially use this advantage to take pictures of jewellery.

3. Good composition

Like I stated in the last photography post, good compostion is key.

Composition basically means how you arrange subject(s) in your picture frame. There should some kind of symmetry that makes your picture easy on the eyes.

Have you ever looked at a picture and thought that something was just wrong with the way it was taken? The photo's composition was probably off. The rule of thirds (putting the subject in 1/3 of the picture as opposed to dead centre) is probably a good place to start with composition.

I personally use gridlines on my phone as a guide when my pictures look slightly off.

There's a symmetry to this picture. Notice how the cup is near dead centre and the flowers follow the rule of thirds?

Our eyes see things in patterns & lines and arranging things makes them more pleasing to the eyes.

You should also make exceptions and explore of course. Phototgraphy is an art afterall.

4. Focus

You could easily focus on your chosen subject by clicking on it (on a touch screen phone). Most phones auto-focus but I prefer focusing manually because I know far better than the phone what exactly it is I want to focus on, yes?

Whilst taking this picture, the auto-focus was actually on the background and not the flowers in my hand. Also, look how getting in close made this picture eh?

This picture shows how focusing is really important. This room was actually moderately lit (a little dark though) but I achieved this look by focusing on the sky outside and voila!

Silhouette picture!

5. Don't underestimate Post-production

5. Don't underestimate Post-production

Can you just take a moment to compare the before and after versions of the picture above? Looks like two different cameras entirely!

The truth is this: Phone photography is all about editing. The tips above are just tips for taking good pictures. We covered them first because to edit a picture to glamour, you need a good picture in the first place to work with.

For a detailed step-by-step guide to fix a bad photo with basic edits, read this post.


The number one benefit of phone photography is spontaneity. Inspiration could hit at any point and the hassel of pulling out a camera compared to whipping out your phone is very stressful.

You know, every moment only lasts in that moment so time is seriously of the essence. Your phone camera will help you save time, capture moments and armed with these tips, you'll get quality, diverse pictures.

And to the budding blogger or photographer who feels angry at having to settle with a phone camera, make it work.

When life gives you lemons...

Got any corrections, tips or questions? Did you find this post helpful?

Leave a comment, I'd love to hear from you!

P.S: I'm so sorry for replying comments late lately.

P.P.S: Would you like me to feature photographers on the blog sharing their work and tips? Let me know in the comments.

P.P.P.S: Shout out to Collins for suggesting this post. I love reader requests. (Last P.S I promise).

Don't forget to follow my blog on Pinterest, GFC (in the sidebar), Instagram, Bloglovin'Twitter and add me on snapchat (@the_unservile), let's connect!

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  1. thanks so much for the tips! this was great! :)


  2. Thanks Ijenna for this post. It was super helpful and very detailed. Thousands and one kisses, lol (no homo). Big yes to featuring photographers to share tips on your blog.

    1. You're welcome hunay. Photographers coming up in September then. ❤❤❤

      Thank you for your contribution.

  3. You're really good! I take awful phone photos. Lol. maybe I'll pay a bit for attention.

    1. Thanks Kachee! I really think you should. Lots of untapped potential.

  4. These tips are actually very helpful to people like me without an actual camera. Good points to note
    Beth fayemi's blog

  5. I think these tips are really cool. There are a lot of potentially awesome phone pictures but these pictures don't reach their full potential because the "takers" don't know what to do. This post shines a little light on that.


    1. Quite true. Not having a camera isn't really a good reason for not starting things anymore.

  6. These tips are amazing, so glad you shared them. I really struggle with taking blog pictures. Thank you for your lovely comment! xx

  7. This post is the bomb.com.
    I've never seen phone photography look so good.
    Thanks for sharing!
    P.S Your blog is so beautiful!


    1. Bomb.com. lol. I likey.

      Thank you so much for the compliment!❤❤

  8. ah i never imagined my phone having those beautiful photos,nice tips


    1. Neither did I when first started, to be honest.


  9. The tips were extremely helpful. Thanks for the tips.


  10. These are amazing tips ,I need to try silhouette


    1. Yay! Glad they were helpful. Silhouette pictures are one of my faves!

  11. Thanks Ijenna... this post was very helpful...